Skip to main content

Reply to this post | See parent post | Go Back
View Post [edit]

Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Apr 4, 2011 8:02am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Tired, fat and all about the Benjamins.

After living through what he did, who can blame Jer for easing up a bit and relying on other peoples' songs that he knew crowds would eat up immediately. I just can't see the Dead whipping out a 14th century Scottish ballad for the first time in front of a 100,000 arena crowd in the 90's. As the crowds grew and the average age went down, it made perfectly good sense from a marketing standpoint to play "hits" vs. trying to get the crowds' acceptance for obscure songs.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: lobster12 Date: Apr 4, 2011 11:45am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Not sure I would go with that 100% If you look at 1985 there are some crazy covers that many folks didn't know. Also in later years when the age of the deadhead dipped they played songs like Matilda, That would be something and Rollin and Tumblin.Not exactly hits. With that said, I'm not sure that those tunes were played because they really loved them, I think they were easy and had 1 maybe 2 verses for the big guy to remember. Even with that ease, Jer couldn't confidently sing Matilda at that Charlotte show in 1995.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: AltheaRose Date: Apr 4, 2011 8:16am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Yeah, I guess. Maybe that's why I like Jerry with Grisman better at that stage. Still, woulda loved to have seen them doing, say, this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hISAeECFCmU&;feature=related

(I don't think it's a rehearsal of the song per se, btw. Just messing around.)

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Apr 4, 2011 8:23am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Seem Jerr might have agreed with you. IMO he seemed much happier and at ease during the Grateful Dawg sessions than he ever was with the 90's Dead. No pressure from record labels or promoters or massive stadium crowds looking to be entertained by their deity. Just music for music's sake.

Of course, I could be dead wrong, but that's my story and i'm sticking to it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezHGR5N7tCE

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: unclejohn52 Date: Apr 4, 2011 8:19am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Agree - pulling out Silver Threads & Golden Needles or Swing Low Sweet Chariot ain't going to cut it in front of a stadium crowd. As you noted AR, on most of those retread covers, the rubber was wearing mighty thin.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: AltheaRose Date: Apr 4, 2011 8:31am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

>ain't going to cut it in front of a stadium crowd.

OK, but why? I didn't see many shows post-85, and only one was in a stadium (though the rest were in big arenas). Still, golly gee, it woulda cut it with ME :-) And maybe I was being dim, but I didn't notice a really huge difference (other than hugeness) in the crowds. Still seemed like Deadheads to me. Maybe selective attention, cuz everyone else talks about drunk frat boys, but ... do you really think the crowds were THAT different?

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Apr 4, 2011 8:44am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

From what I saw early 80's through mid 90's, the crowds gathered had more and more of a commercial vibe to them. Not all, but a growing number. While I was in school we referred to one of these groups as FratHeads. Initially brought in by the promise of easy drugs and scantily clad over-medicated women, this number seemed to grow exponentially after Touch of Grey. Now I'd have to say this did not consitute a majority by any matter of means, but this was the group who were buying the albums in the greatest numbers. So, in order to keep the cash flow going, aiming the music at these folks seemed almost inevitable.

Again, this is purely my own option. Don't have hard facts to back it up with, just personal experience.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: William Tell Date: Apr 4, 2011 2:56pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Bingo!

Excellent description of what I thought the "scene" was transforming to as I bailed ~ 82...other aspects too (shear size, etc.) but commercialization (the whole parking lot scene with vendors, etc., etc., seemed so out of place to me, and yet many latter day heads almost feel that they didn't "need" to go "in", and that the scene was "it" for them...if that makes sense).

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Cliff Hucker Date: Apr 4, 2011 4:03pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

There was no reason to go in William Tell...

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: William Tell Date: Apr 5, 2011 6:09am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

That WAS good...what a setup.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: ringolevio Date: Apr 5, 2011 4:48am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

LOL. You're all cracking me up this morning

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: staggerleib Date: Apr 5, 2011 6:35pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

My friends and I called them TOG heads (Touch of Grey). it just wasn't the same. But still, there was just enough of the same vibe that kept us interested. I jumped off the bus in 92, at Soldier Field. Vowed to see any JGB show I could, but no more Dead shows. Just too damned big. I'm one of the few that thought Vinnie could add to the scene. Unfortunately, it simply wasn't to be. I did see them in '94 at Soldier Field, cause I hadn't seen Traffic live before, and didn't see the '95 shows.

Perils of living in Chicago.

Nothing will ever live up to the Uptown Theatre and the Alpine Valley shows for me, though.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Apr 6, 2011 9:28am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Favorite venue? Probably Red Rocks, but I never had a chance to see them in one of the theaters. Saratoga Springs is a close second.

Worst venue? Old Boston Garden or Sullivan Stadium

Best parking lot scene? Loved Oxford Plains. Absolutely no security that I recall and immense amounts of room.

Worst parking lot scene? Boston Garden. There was no parking lot. Similar thing w/ MSG. Desert Sky Pavilion also kind of sucked. Well, maybe because the only two shows I saw there (my last) left me with a very bad feeling.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: staggerleib Date: Apr 6, 2011 9:52am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

The parking lot at Soldier field was quite unpleasant. Certainly later in the game, so that the crowd was not the kind of easy going people I loved in the early days. The TogHeads were by then the majority. It was asphalt, and it was cedit card swiping devices. But at least, there was room. I could, and did, ride my bike to the show. That was a wonderful thing.

Once again, I have to say that the parking lot, though, at the Rosemont Horizon, in the shadows of O'Hare Airport were witout a doubt the worst. With too much cold, and too much attitude, but even worse, the jets flying over every few minutes, extremely unpleasant.

This post was modified by staggerleib on 2011-04-06 16:52:08

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Apr 6, 2011 10:14am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

Your recollection of riding your bike to a show reminds me I should put an asterisk next to the Boston Garden comment. The ability to take the T from my front door to the Garden made the show the easiest to get to and get from that I ever went to. That and the proximity to some outstanding Italian restaurants in the North End also weighed heavily in its overall appeal.

This post was modified by SomeDarkHollow on 2011-04-06 17:14:03

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: staggerleib Date: Apr 6, 2011 10:02am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

That's true, I love those north end Italian restaurants. I was just there a couple of months ago, and had a fantastic meal with friends in one of these that felt like the extension of an Italian family's kitchen. Wonderful!

I used to ride the El to the Uptown, back when I was in high school. So many great memories. I think that I've relayed the story of when Jerry was in the Limo after one show, and offered me a ride around the block with a "Chat."

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: AltheaRose Date: Apr 6, 2011 8:40am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

>Nothing will ever live up to the Uptown Theatre and the Alpine Valley shows for me, though.

That's for sure!

The only shows I saw post-85 were all in Colorado. Maybe Colorado just has a nice vibe whether a show is full of FratHeads or TOGHeads or whatever ... a stadium in Chicago does sound pretty grim.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: staggerleib Date: Apr 6, 2011 9:01am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: In London He Did Dwell: 3/13/81

I did get a chance to see two Red Rocks shows, and they were both amazing. What an amazing venue!

Winters in Chicago can be so very daunting, no doubt, and believe me, the Rosemont Horizon shows, too early in the spring, or to late in the fall were not the best parking lot experiences, to be sure. For that matter, the Horizon wasn't a great venue regardless. Simply awful sound.

However, the Uptown was a beautiful theatre in the gothic style. The sound was wonderful, the band loved that old place, and it was so small and intimate.